Language teaching in the UK has for fifty years suffered from errors based on the work of Professors Eric Hawkins, Noam Chomsky and Steven Krashen, none of whom has or had any sustained experience of teaching languages in schools. Eric Hawkins had a little, but not enough, and did not support his assertions with research evidence, despite having the means to obtain it. The errors are founded on theories that languages are acquired rather than learned.
Ed Clarke's 2 part Scholarship Course (£12.99 each) is the exact opposite of these theories. Pupils' knowledge and understanding of Latin grammar is carefully built up from the outset, with each new point clearly explained in a cordial, conversational style, and supported by exercises that ensure that they understand the work fully, without turning it into a grind. The A4 format helps with this by allowing a generous, spacious layout that makes the material much easier to absorb. Although there are other good traditional Latin courses on the market, this one would now be my first choice, whether for its initial audience of prep school teachers, or state school teachers looking for a challenging course for higher-attaining pupils. Its scope extends well beyond the requirements of GCSE and would make a good transition to A level.
Apart from the cover, there are no illustrations. This concerned me a little until I looked at another recent publication, Mary Beard's excellent SPQR, and saw how limited the illustrations were in comparison with those easily available on the internet. There is every reason to encourage pupils to make their own collections, and indeed to explore Roman culture and artefacts using all available resources. Here, for example are items of Roman glass from Cologne. Mr Clarke is no killjoy, and his Highfield School Classics page has a splendid picture of pupils enjoying dressing up as Romans.
The Amazon reviews come from tutors and students, and are well worth reading, as is Ysenda Maxtone Graham's masterly and entertaining survey of the history of Latin teaching in the last century in The Spectator.